What Happens to Dogs in Shelters?


Nov 25, 2020

We are all aware of the feelings of sadness and hope experienced in animal shelters, but many people turn a blind eye to it and fund animal cruelty, rather than prevent it. Instead of adopting dogs and supporting shelters, people will choose to purchase an expensive puppy from an irresponsible breeder, breed their dogs for fun, or support puppy farms via pet shop adoption. Even though every dog needs a home, if these cruel practices didn’t profit, then they would shut down and become non-existent. This article has been written to help you gain a better understanding of what happens to dogs in shelters.

Basics of a Shelter

There are around 5,000 animal shelters in the United States and they are nonprofit organizations. Some are run by animal control services, while others are independent. Animal shelters are not overseen by a national agency, but there are other nonprofit organizations that try to devote their time to ensuring these animal shelters are run effectively. Many different species are taken into animal shelters, but unfortunately, not all of the animals that go in will end up leaving. In kill shelters, over half of the animals received will be euthanized due to their age, health, behavior or lack of space. The length of time an animal can remain there will depend on the local laws and the rules of the shelter.

Different Types of Shelters

Many shelters are dedicated to saving animals and will take in every stray or unwanted pet that arrives, but due to many shelters being overfilled, some animals will have to be put to sleep in order to welcome new homeless pets in. These are called ‘kill shelters.’ However, there are a limited number of animal shelters that are dedicated to never putting a young and healthy animal down. These are called ‘no kill shelters.’ Some homeless pets will end up in rescue groups, which usually rely on volunteers to care for the homeless pets. When an animal is dropped off at a shelter, here is an explanation that is clear and detailed what happens to dogs in shelters.

Adopting a Shelter Pet

Even though the reality of animal shelters is sad, you can play a part in helping the animals that have an uncertain future. Instead of funding an irresponsible breeder or supporting a cruel puppy farm, you should look into adopting a shelter pet instead, and encourage other people you know to do the same thing. If you are after a certain breed, you can look into a breed specific rescue. Puppies end up in shelters too, so the age of your new friend should not be an issue. Adoption fees are less than buying a puppy and the dog will be assessed, vaccinated and castrated. If you don’t feel ready to adopt a dog, but you still want to help, then volunteering, donating or fostering will be much appreciated.

Now that you know how animal shelters work, next time you plan to welcome a new pet into your home or breed your dog, hopefully you will think about all of the homeless animals and needless deaths and do the right thing. Adopting a dog may not change the world, but it will change their world forever.

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